Reading Recovery and Literacy Intervention

My name is Kaylene Humphreys; I am a trained Reading Recovery and Literacy Intervention Teacher at Mont Albert Primary School, having completed a Masters of Education (Literacy Intervention/Oral Language/Literacy Leadership) in 2010 and Reading Recovery Training in 2011.  I have also taught every year level and Literacy Intervention for many years.


Successful Readers:

—  Expect what they read to make sense

—  Make predictions based on their understanding of the content (meaning),

—  Use knowledge of language (structure)

—  Use information contained in the print (visual)

—  Re-read and cross-check m/s/v when reading doesn’t make sense/sound right or look right...



Reading Recovery is a school based early literacy intervention program that provides a second opportunity for students who, after one year at school, have not yet established effective reading and writing processes. 

Implementation Goal                  

Teachers aim to produce independent readers whose reading and writing improves whenever they read or write.

What does it involve?

  • Daily, 30 minute lessons (approx12-20 weeks or 100 lessons in total)
  • Includes reading and writing (letter/word work)
  • Aims to promote the child’s independence

Different program for each student

  • Individualised lessons based on the student’s strengths and needs
  • Aims for rapid progress (not just improvement)
  • The focus is on teaching the student how to use strategies every time they read and write


Literacy Intervention (PROVIDED FOR STUDENTS FROM PREP TO YEAR SIX – Not to be confused with Reading Recovery, which is program designed for Year 1)

  • Small groups – (usually no more than 5-6 students)
  • Weekly, 40 minute sessions
  • Uses ‘Reading Recovery’ strategies
  • Includes reading and writing (letter/word work/vocabulary/comprehension)
  • The focus is on teaching the students how to use strategies every time they read and write
  • Builds on the student’s strengths and promotes independence

Things to do to help your child with reading:

  • Talk to them and with them
  • Read, read and read to your child
  • Have them listen to taped stories
  • Let them see you as a reader
  • Encourage them to read easy books
  • Read to them if they are tired
  • Assist your child to break words into onset and rime (e.g. bl – ack, p – ot, w – ent) or syllables (e.g. des/crip/tion, po/ta/to, loo k/ing).  This is much quicker and more effective long term and maintains fluency when reading.

Reading to your child is also important as you are modeling to them how to read with fluency and expression in a phrased way.

Pause, Prompt, Praise…

Pause:Wait AT LEAST 5 seconds and give your child a chance to solve the problem


—  Try that again from the beginning of the sentence (gives the child a change to recognise the error and/or self-correct)

—  Did that makes sense? (meaning)

—  Did that sound right? (structure)

—  Did that look right? (visual)

—  Look at the picture

—  Look at the first letter

—  Find a part of the word you know

After one or two prompts tell your child the word if necessary…especially proper nouns


—  I liked the way you worked that out…

—  I liked the way you looked at the picture…

—  I liked the way you had a guess…

—  I liked the way you re-read…

  Asking questions helps readers maintain comprehension

—  Teach your child to ask questions as they read

—  Show how you ask questions as you read

—  Questions need to be both literal and inferential

—  Also discuss the story and make links to your child’s world and their own experiences

Things to do to help your child with writing:

  • Give the ‘real’ opportunities to write – lists of things to do in the holidays, letters/ postcards/ birthday cards, diaries, ‘post-it’ reminder notes etc…
  • Ask your child to ‘Say the word slowly and LISTEN’, ‘What do you hear?’  ‘How would you write that?’ E.g. w / e / n / t, p / l / ay, t / r / u / ck.  THIS IS A GREAT STRATEGY FOR WRITING – HOWEVER USE ONSET AND RIME FOR READING – AS MENTIONED ABOVE)
  • Help your child connect what they hear (the ‘sounds’ in words) to what they ‘see’ (the written letters), remembering a ‘sound’ may contain one or more letters (e.g. double letters, sh, th, ck, ch, ay, or, ar etc)